Former Town Council candidate Gwen Pangle will not run in November’s special election.
Pangle said she made the decision last week, a little more than five months removed from her fourth-place finish in November’s Town Council elections. Shortly after falling 44 votes shy of a Town Council seat, Pangle had planned to run in this year’s special election, when voters will select someone to fill Mayor Kelly Burk’s previous council seat. Burk’s council term does not expire until Dec. 31, 2018, and the special election will determine who will complete the term. Hugh Forsythe was appointed earlier this year to fill her council seat until the special election is held.
For Pangle, the reversal of course was attributed to an unexpected opportunity for the longtime Realtor, who also currently serves as the president of the Historic Downtown Leesburg Association. A modeling agency reached out to Pangle as advertisers are embracing the “silver hair look” and seeking to feature real life people representing their products, she said.
At first, she considered taking on the new modeling career, continuing to run her downtown-based business, Pangle & Associates, and making another go for a council seat. In addition to her council run last year, she also applied for the interim appointments for the two council terms vacated in the past year.
“For weeks I agonized, rationalized, and prayed about it. I decided that council will be there long after my ‘look’ is gone, so I am giving myself permission to walk a new path and do a fun thing that I can fit in with helping people buy and sell homes,” she said.
Pangle said she expects to remain “plenty involved” with Leesburg, just not on the council dais. While she won’t rule out a Town Council run in 2018, she said she is enjoying her newfound gig, and will look to whatever the future holds.
“I’m a big believer in the right thing tends to happen,” she said.
Thus far, only Josh Thiel, who also put his hat in the ring for the interim council appointment earlier this year, has announced his intentions to run in the special election. Current council seat holder Forsythe has not announced his intentions. Whomever does win the seat in November will need to keep their campaign signs handy, as the seat will be on the ballot again the following November, this time for a four-year term.